Super Bowl QB McMahon Hits Dallas to Stress Hit Risks

By Angie Wiatrowski in Miscellaneous on Feb 6, 2011 9:00PM

Super Bowl XLV is on the minds of many football focused fans out there, and while Chicago is drooling at their rival getting a chance at the Vince Lombardi trophy, a bigger issue is at hand out in Dallas.

Chicago will never forget the ’85 Super Bowl Bears, but one particular quarterback may have problems remembering this event in the future, even simple things such as why he walked into a room.

Former Bear Jim McMahon is out in Dallas ahead of today’s matchup between the Pittsburgh Steelers and Green Bay Packers hoping to bring awareness of the dangers of concussions and hard-hits currently plaguing the NFL.

The ‘Punky QB’ led the Bears to a Super Bowl Victory in 1986 along with a second championship with the Packers in 1997. However, his memory has gone faint after 15 seasons with at least five concussions.

McMahon is working with the Sport Legacy Institute (SLI), a non-profit organization aiming to help advance the study, treatment and prevention of head trauma in athletes and has actually donated his brain to a concussion study after his death.

He told the LA Times, “These things add up. The more you let it go and not get checked it can be devastating. For now I can still kind of remember (winning a Super Bowl) pretty clearly, but I’ve had some issues with my memory.”

McMahon elaborated on his memory loss back in November on The Dan Patrick Show saying that he missed plays but not games with concussive symptoms and "back then it was just tape aspirin to your helmet and go back in."

In preventive measures and addressing concussions McMahon said, “The only way to get away from it is put back the leather helmets and no face masks and see who tries to use their head.”

Concussions in the NFL have dominated headlines this season and the NFL had information about concussions posted in the locker rooms of all 32 teams. It also created a concussion awareness website. The league has also taken strides to increase fines for dangerous hits and introduce rules requiring a player to be cleared by an independent doctor before returning after a concussion.

Three-hundred football players have donated their brains for study after death, and SLI founder Chris Nowinski said, “I’m not the same guy. I’m probably on borrowed time.”

As for McMahon, "You meet new friends every day even though you've known them for years."